The Kansas City Chiefs brass is making their way to Indianapolis this week to watch the 2011 NFL Combine. While there, the Chiefs scouting department will measure and weigh players, time their 40-yard dash and count how many times they can bench press a certain amount of weight.
In other words, there's a lot of basic number crunching things going on. What they'll also be doing is speaking with many of these prospects in an interview style.
Teams have already submitted which players they'd like to speak with so the Combine folks can coordinate it all. Each interview will be 15 minutes and it'll happen on the first three days the players are in Indy. These days it's become an art to gain any useful information out of them during the interview process. That's likely because players have been exposed to agents who have coached them on the best way to answer a question.
Ross Tucker of SI.com has some cool history on when the Combine interviews became so important and there's a slight Chiefs connection. Here's a snippet from his story before the 2010 Combine:
Several league sources I consulted trace the increasing prominence of the combine interview to around the time the Patriots began winning championships behind a collection of smart guys who love the game. Guys like Mike Vrabel,Tedy Bruschi, and of course,Tom Brady. Now almost every NFL team is trying to find players who are committed to becoming the best they can be at the sport they adore. And not just because of the money.
He identifies passion for the game, values and character as well as football intelligence some of the key questions the teams are looking for. Those are things we've heard GM Scott Pioli mention quite often.
I would expect the Chiefs to interview a good chunk of juniors because they spent a few days talking with players at the 2011 Senior Bowl earlier this month.